Parents demand answers as children fall ill after meningitis jabs

(Western Daily Press, June 12, 2000)

Case 1

Father's fears over tot's reaction

TERRY Meredith’s daughter has never been an angel but the change in her behaviour since having the meningitis C vaccination has left him worried about the long-term effects.

Amy, who is almost three, has been acting differently since her injection two weeks ago.

"The day she had the jab she went absolutely loopy. It was like she was on Ecstasy or something," he said.

"She is normally boisterous but she has been particularly bad since the injection. Her behaviour has deteriorated and she has been violent towards her mother and her 13-month-old sister Stacey. We have had to discipline her and tell her off more than ever before."

Mr Meredith, who lives in Tidenham, near Chepstow, said friends had also reported strange behaviour among their children since the injections.

"One of our friends has a little boy and he has gone stubborn and is shouting and has been violent, he said.

"Two others have also said they have seen a marked change in their children’s behaviour since they had it.

"Amy has never been as good as gold, but since the day she had it she has been hyperactive," he said.

"We all want to know whether any damage has been done, if it is temporary and whether something should be done about it."

He said the family’s experience had put them off taking their children for any more injections.

Case 2

Black-outs ‘not treated seriously’

KEVIN and Nicola Hall say they are still waiting for an explanation of their daughter’s sudden illness.

In the weeks after her vaccination at Norton Hill School in Midsomer Norton, near Bath, Rebecca suffered ten blackouts, severe headaches and other symptoms.

The 12-year-old collapsed two hours after receiving her injection at the 1,250-pupil school on March 29.

She was taken to Royal United hospital and kept under observation for a night.

But since then she has collapsed at school on two other occasions and reported to the nurse seven times with headaches, dizziness and weakness.

She has also been sent home from school ten times and advised not to take part in PE lessons after collapsing on the playing field twice.

Mr Hall said he wanted to know if she had suffered any lasting damage.

"Before she had the vaccination she was fit and healthy but the doctor and paediatrician are treating it as if it is a migraine and giving her tablets," he said.

"She has not had a history of migraines and there is no history of it in the family and from what we know her symptoms are not even the same.

"I don’t feel her case has been treated seriously. We certainly want the health authorities to be more aware of the side effects that some people are having.

"I am not in favour of the immunisation programme being stopped but we don’t want these side effects being treated as if is just a migraine."

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